A Sunderland football academy is offering would-be coaches the chance to score a new career.
Fast Feet is now in its seventh year and has about 300 youngsters, from three to 16 years old, learning about skills and techniques.
In nurturing their talents, Fast Feet has built a strong reputation which will make a real difference to the skills and ambitions of many more young people across the country through franchises.Coun Michael Mordey
Owned and led by Mark Rutter, the football academy has 12 staff, and Mark believes the time is right for expansion through franchises.
“We want to deliver our brand in areas we can’t at the moment,” he said.
“We’re looking for experienced, passionate coaches who may have a footballing background or may be coaches already.
“We’ve seen the difference Fast Feet has had on the confidence, ability and future career prospects of youngsters taking part in our programmes.
“Because we welcome all abilities, from beginners to advanced, and all age groups from pre-school to 16-year olds, we’re offering a unique package of skills and coaching at Fast Feet.
“We’ll guide each franchisee through our programmes and help them with setting up the business – I did it myself and I’m aware of the challenges in starting a business.
“It’s good that we can pass on our own experience to other coaches who are equally enthusiastic about football training.”
Mark has appointed a franchise director, and staff headcount at the firm’s offices in the Evolve Business Centre, at Rainton Bridge, will continue to rise because of the continuing support franchisees will need.
“Evolve is an excellent base. It is central, coaches and staff can easily get to us, and the Evolve staff are superb, really helping us to get on with our business.”
Fast Feet now has youngsters coming from Darlington, Hartlepool and Northallerton to take part in coaching at Fast Feet venues in Chester-le-Street and across South Tyneside. More girls are taking part in Fast Feet coaching, and the academy offers girls’ only and mixed sessions, to suit the individual.
Coun Michael Mordey, deputy leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “It’s fantastic to see not only the success of Fast Feet but also the success of its students.
“In nurturing their talents, Fast Feet has built a strong reputation which will make a real difference to the skills and ambitions of many more young people across the country through franchises.”